By: Marc McMahon
Trying to get clean and sober and stay that way is nothing new to me. I have wanted to quit using drugs and alcohol, since six months after I tried cocaine at age twenty-six. If I do the math that means that over the course of the last 21 years I have been in some form of drug treatment facility, or psychiatric hospital.
At least two times a year, for the past 21 years!! I so desperately wanted to quit, and simply could not for more than a couple months at a time.
It is like being placed in the palm of the devil’s hand, and trying to move, but simply not being able too. Like swimming in the gutter of addiction ruled by a serpent, and every time I would pull myself up to the rim of the gutter and be ready to jump out to my freedom. It would fling its scaly tail towards me, wrap it around my neck, and yank me back in. You have not completely known frustration, agitation, or desperation fully, until you have experienced that, and lived to tell about it!
I have been wondering through life for all these years looking for something I didn’t even know I was looking for, and needing something I didn’t know I never had. I stumbled upon them though this go around in recovery, and I owe much of the credit to this online recovery community that has openly welcomed me and to whom I give much of myself trying to support. To give back, for one time in my life since my addiction started I wanted to be able to give back more than I received.
Through finding out I enjoyed writing, and that it gave my soul its voice. I learned many things about myself that I would have never had the pleasure of knowing otherwise. Through being allowed to write, and to be supported by this collective group of people that are, or were I should say, complete strangers to me. I have been able to personalize my addiction in a tangible way.
It has allowed me to see my addiction, literally as my enemy on the battlefield, and given me a place to direct an EXTREME amount of hatred towards it. I train myself in recovery, much like a mighty warrior would for battle!
Now often times when I write, I offer words of encouragement and hope to others who are still struggling to find their identity with this. So until they do, I offer them the one I have found. I talk to those asking for help or encouragement as though they are soldiers on the battlefield trying to fight a mighty army alone. I tell them alone we don’t stand a chance, but together, we can change the world, and I do mean that.
I also remind them, that although our enemy is far more powerful than we are alone. If they join my cause, become soldiers in this army. They too, can not only win their personal battle but help us all flip the script on this disease. Take back some of our own he is still holding as prisoners of this war.
Make this disease cringe every time he hears our boots marching towards him for battle!!
In doing so, I have found the two things I never knew I was lacking. MEANING and PURPOSE, in finding those two character attributes. I was able to find some sense of direction for my life, and a reason to continue breathing the air on this planet. Now that I have a meaning for my life, and a purpose for being on this earth, my ability to stay clean and sober has increased a hundred fold.
I am not sure how I made it this long, without ever having those two qualities. Then it dawned on me, I think most people go through life never finding them. Just wondering aimlessly through their everyday lives, trying to fill the whole inside them, but not knowing what to fill it with.
So many of us fill that hole with drugs and alcohol. At least then, we don’t have to feel the incompleteness that comes, from being an empty shell of a human being. MEANING and PURPOSE I have found, and it has been my answer thus far. I am going to share mine with all of those who want some until they can find their own.
About the Author: Marc is a 48 yr. old Author, speaker, and soldier against the disease of addiction. He resides in the beautiful Pacific Northwest. Marc’s hobbies include writing, Mt. biking, hiking, and drinking copious amounts of coffee. Marc is also the proud father, of one very outstanding young man. As Marc always likes to say “Be blessed, my friends.”